Pain Management Report Passes—What Happens Now?

Pain Management Report Passes—What Happens Now?

The federal Pain Management Best Practices Inter-Agency Task Force has approved a draft report that is drawing generally positive reaction from the pain community.

The report, which is expected to be finalized by the end of the month, updates best practices and issues recommendations that address gaps or inconsistencies for managing chronic and acute pain.

(Here is a copy of the draft report)

6,000 individuals and over 150 organizations submitted comments earlier this year.

Task Force Chair Dr. Vanila Singh called this a “very special and pivotal moment for advancing pain management.”

The big challenge is how to get this report distributed so that better pain management and treatment can reach those who need it—the chronic pain patient.

“At the end of the day the report is a piece of paper, it’s going to mean nothing unless people advocate for change,” said Cindy Steinberg, U.S. Pain Foundation who was the only pain advocate on the task force.

The American Medical Association praised the Task Force recommendations which called for:

  • bolstering support for multidisciplinary, multimodal approaches to treating patients with acute and chronic pain;
  • reversing harmful policies such as arbitrary limits on prescribed pain medications;
  • providing individualized treatment that accounts for co-morbidities and severity, not one-size-fits-all approaches—a point emphasized recently by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention;
  • encouraging better health insurance coverage of affordable, evidence-based non-opioid medications and non-pharmacologic treatments for pain and eliminating obstacles to treatment such as fail-first policies;

There were some critics—not surprisingly from both sides of the opioid argument.

For Richard “Red” Lawhern, who runs the Alliance for the Treatment of Intractable Pain, while praising the efforts of the Task Force, noted that it did not directly address AMA repudiation of the CDC Guideline for Opioid Prescribing.

Meanwhile, Dr. Andrew Kolodny, the executive director of Physicians for Responsible Opioid Prescribing (PROP) charged in a tweet that “opioid makers didn’t like the CDC Guideline recommendation so they got a law to create a new HHS Task Force stacked with their friends that proposed alternative recommendations.”

Nearly 20-million Americans have debilitating chronic high impact pain- defined as pain lasting than has lasted 3 months or longer that restricts daily major life or work activities.

Kate Nicholson, an attorney and pain patient advocate, praised the task force “for identifying the need for reduction of stigma of pain and the stigma related to opioids and the need for truly integrated care that covers several modalities. “

Task Force member Dr. Molly Rutherford of Crestwood, Kentucky said that she came to the task force “anti-opioid but I have more balance now” in how she treats patients.

She pointed one of the major problems in treating pain is the lack of time that primary care physicians have in treating their patients—which she called a detriment to care.

The two-day meeting wrapped up on Friday—and much of the morning was spent on the critical issue.

What happens now to this interagency effort which was led by Dr. Singh who is the Chief Medical Officer for HHS?

How can this public policy best be implemented by state and local governments, promoted by medical associations to their members and how it can influence payers and other stakeholders in the health care system?

“It’s going to take a big push from patients,” said Terri Lewis, Ph.D.

And from state officials.

Task Force member Sherif Zaafran, M.D. who is also President, Texas Medical Board, Austin, Texas promised on Twitter his board “and CMS will coordinate to make sure that we avoid unintended consequences on guidelines for pain management.”

It’s a start.

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Authored by: Ed Coghlan

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Jeanette French

So when do patients start seeing results is what I want to know, when do doctors stopped being treated like criminals just like patients in pain, when do the warning letters stop that go to doc, pharmacies and patients. When will we stop terrorizing doctors and patients and pharmacies, I am not hearing this info, so when does it stop and we can go back to being just normal pain patients again and treated as such with dignity and respect. Also who is gonna compensate the families of those who took their lives over this fiasco of the so called voluntary cdc guidelines that soon became law due to tall the warning letters being sent out.I have seen them and they do exist. Sent to doc if they prescribe over the cdc limits to any patients, send to pharmacies to not fill, delay and in anyway not fill these legal prescriptions. When is this gonna stop so that people in pain do not have to take their own lives to have any kind of relief, I ask you WHEN ???

Lau

Dr. Lawhern precisely & eloquently gets it right every time: (I’m just now seeing his column here dated 3/3/19).

He should have been included on the committee, but we’re living in an alternate reality & imperfect America these days.

As follows:
Missing Dimensions on HHS Task Force recommendations on pain by Dr. Red Lawhern

Thank you sir: for your hard work & dedication!

….if I may only reiterate: politicians are not our friends in this fight & the sparse few who align with us “ its too little too late & time is of the essence-like yesterday or 4 years ago!”

Lau

The president needs to declare a suicide/pain crisis for emergency reversals & a hard stop to:

IE: patient abandonment across country, pharmaceutical quotas & currently doctors STILL being targeted., cancer patient & surgical torture, veteran suicides etc , ER refusals to appropriately treat (the list goes on)!

The task force report is a ploy to subdue *anticipated* (years ago) outrage. These draconian measures are now affecting the general population. What serious recommendations look like (not just the appearance of:)ie:

1. safe harbor for doctors treating PAIN OF chronically ill
2. Call off the DEA
3. PROTECT the privacy of patients re: medical records/data
4. Call off insurance: they are playing doctor & affecting Hlth/pt outcomes
5. Assemble a real panel to re-write the “pain patient bill if rights” & implement policy in that regard.
…..Now that sure sounds better than the diversion tactics of: mindfulness & massage!

Its the presidents job to protect the citizens of this country. The results of these “requirements” in medicine have harmed patients & caused terrible pt. Outcomes.

Start lawyering up! There needs to be case precedent established. It might take #50 attempts & refusals BUT we only need one case to take root. If you have been adversely affected or lost a loved one – a consult costs $0.

Amber

“It’s going to take a big push from patients,”

Do they think we haven’t been trying? We’ve been trying, we’ve been the only ones to take this on (along with a small amount of doctors- those willing to risk their reputations) and we’ve had to do it while trying to keep from going insane from the pain, while becoming bedridden, while dealing with other medical issues.

So here’s what happens when we pain patients try to give a “big push”- we get labeled as drug seekers, even though we very much are not. Hell, we’ll get labeled with “drug seeking behavior” just for mentioning pain medication. That gets put in our chart, so even if we leave that doctor to try to find a better one (thus becoming labeled as a “doctor shopper” on top of “drug seeker), that next doctor is going to look in our chart, see those words and then not take us seriously. Because they will take the word of another doctor, one they don’t even know, above their patient. Not to mention, there is no way for us to get those labels removed unless the doctor that wrote them agrees to change it (they never change it. The closest I’ve come is having a doctor, or multiple doctors- of different specialties, of course- that previous records and notes should be disregarded) You can’t just withhold part of your medical records, because they see that  hiding suspicious behavior! *throws hands up in the air* We are in a lose/lose situation. And these loses are literally killing us. Which I guess is pretty convenient for the government, because if we’re dead they no longer have to pay for our insurance or for our disability. It’s not as if we choose to be in pain! (But most people are now becoming addicts because they RECREATIONALLY do illegally obtained opioids. Addiction is a disease and deserve treatment but it shouldn’t be at the cost of our lives- especially since things are getting worse, not better!) I just… I don’t understand how we can so easily be pushed aside, left to suffer and die.

The HHS Task Force recommendations seem to represent incremental progress. But they seriously stop short of what can and MUST be done: the CDC guidelines on prescribing must be withdrawn pending revisions of practice standards by medical professional academies and the Federation of State Medical Boards. That will take years that we don’t have. Thus I am urging pain patients and caregivers to call their Senators and Representative to advocate for the following step:

Demand that your legislators become co-signers of a bill directing that the following quote from AMA Resolution 235 9november 2018) will be enforced as official US policy in all US (and eventually all State) drug enforcement and law enforcement agencies:

“RESOLVED, that our AMA advocate that no entity should use MME
(morphine milligram equivalents) thresholds as anything more
than guidance, and physicians should not be subject to professional
discipline, loss of board certification, loss of clinical privileges,
criminal prosecution, civil liability, or other penalties or
practice limitations solely for prescribing opioids at a
quantitative level above the MME thresholds found in the CDC
Guideline for Prescribing Opioids.”

Mary

I do believe Sam is aware and awake. I know it’s difficult for some people to hear this truth. How much more will it take to see the truth? A great awakening is needed. God Bless and help us all. In Jesus mighty name. Amen

Sam

I’m worried for us all when a one of the oppressors named Kolodny says and I quote “…This generation will have to die off before this crisis is over”. Words like that and the actions now taking place against pain patients bring to mind the situation could be a deliberate move of elimination. For years certain government agencies have been reporting how the aging and the ill are getting to be so many that their health care plus social security is and will be costing more than can be afforded. When the dollar amounts now mentioned say that we are costing the nation already in hundreds of billions in negative economy, I have to wonder if this situation is more diabolical in nature than what we want to believe.

Michelle! You made a blatant statement that “even you are smart enough to see the pts @p mgmt that are faking it”! I find that statement infuriating! Is it just yur pain that deserves treatment? This attitude you possess is exactly what the govt attitude is! You have no idea what other ppl are indeed suffering from yet u want empathy for your disease process! I pray you get some!

Kat Koe

At least the HHS report is a start and some patients have reported their doctors are writing scripts again. Unfortunately, there are many doctors who won’t feel comfortable with the CDC guidelines clarification until the DEA is called off and won’t do anymore raids.

@Michele Hebert…Your story is one of so many similar to yours but somehow your story/words just struck me hard and put tears in my eyes. We, here on NPR, have heard far far too many of our overwhelming stories…we ought to bombard Kolodney and his cohorts desks with millions of them sent on paper!
Please Michele, as I too am severely controlled by a painful life and lie here in bed on ice writing this, I know it’s extremely difficult, but please keep strong.
I am so very sorry for all that you endure each minute of each day. It’s exhausting and disheartening and wrong. God bless you dear one, I will be praying for things to greatly change for you. Maureen M.

Barbara H

Nothing will come of draft report. The CDC and FDA have waited to long. They act like they just became aware of the seriousness of what the chronic pain guidelines of 2016 had done. “They were told before they released them” that widespread harm would happen if they implanted them. The CDC knew all along and so did FDA and all government officials. Chronic pain patients and advocates have been crying for 3 years. If the CDC and FDA think they can ever be trusted again in America they need to hold a nationally televised press conference and state the seriousness of what is going onto patients and that all states should dismiss all their misguided laws put in place and allow physicians to address patients. However they are relying on cancer patients and chronically ill and disabled patients to fight for themselves. What are you kidding me. The government acts like the patients did this to ourselves. This is just unheard of in the twentest century. I dont no about any other American. I feel like we are living in a third world country in the 1800s. Stand up America fight for our rights stand up for the people who can’t fight for themselves. Stand up make our country great again.

Sue Staly

We have all been a part of an illegal experiment conducted by the CDC FDA and highest levels of our government against are knowledge or our agreement to participate. Everyone did you notice for 3 years the government did absolutely nothing for chronic intractable pain patients nor cancer patients for that matter. Please read CIAAG Violation of Nation. The documents were taken to Congress on April 8 2019 and were confirmed that yes we were on fact all put through a clinical trial against our will. The same day the documents eere brought to Congress letting them know they would be released to the public the CDC and FDA made statements. This crisis is far from over and has deep political roots. American Citizens need to all read Violation of Nation and we all need to demand all politicians involved should be arrested and brought to justice. They are not above the laws that were created in this country. RISE UP AMERICA. WE THE PEOPLE DEMAND ANSWERS AND JUSTICE..!!!!!!

Donna

Im a mother of 3 was in a car wreck about 6 years back with neck injuries they wanted to do surgery I was scared they sent me to pain clinic I walked into it it scared me even more I walked back out 6mths later went to the dr. told them I don’t care what you have to do just fix me 3 Days Later had surgery spinal fusion C4 5 and 6 6 months later was referred to pain mgmt for issues that came after surgery was it a nice safe feeling pain mgmt prescribed 10mg 4 X day Percocet 300 mg 3 Xday Gabapentin 4 mg 3 x day. Later on they added 10mg MS Contin which I requested to be off of since I was unable to work taking them went to all my appts then all my drug test all my pill counts took my medication as directed as the Clinic started closing across the state so I had to drive to Nashville then they changed names and I actually got into one of theirs an hour closer to my home in Sevier County so I still drive 2 hours since their offices didn’t scare me so I continue to my care however they changed me to 7.5 mg 3x a day Percocet and kept the other two the same this does not work for me I am now unable to work my daughter has to help undress me and brush my hair with the original dose I was able to work this one-size-fits-all does not work I’ve done all the shots over the past 5 years over and over and none of those worked now it looks like I’ll be applying for SS disability this sucks I’m 49yrs old I am responsible I am able to work with medication but the damn doctors are so scared of the government they will not write prescriptions that I have been on for 5 years successfully! it makes me so mad that they categorize the opioid epidemic with just the pills it’s heroin and all the other illicit street drugs that are thrown into this category with the deaths that are causing people like me that can work that can take medication responsibly into a state of disability I dont want! I’m DDD, Cpost-laminectomy syndrome, arthritis,radiculopathyFacet arthropathy,much more.. Help

Michele Hebert

I’m a pain patient who had rather low dose of opiates taken from me cause of all the propaganda. Its now 2 years later and I havnt left my home. I miss work, friends, basically having somewhat of a quality of life. Been close to suicide as I live alone and my work as a Clinical Psychotherapist gave my life purpose. I’m one of millions I know. I have been shamed and quilted by Dr after Dr if I mention my pain situation. This is w/o formally requesting help with meds. I have tried everything there is out there to try to crawl out of this cave. I’m a POW losing my mind barely hanging on moment to moment. I’ve started researching for for help with suicide. I read above about how us pain patients really need to push this newest potential change to make it happen. I know I can speak for all of us when I say, we’ve never stopped pushing! Why would we? Pain patients are the loudest patients but never heard. Also, most of us can’t fight anymore because we’re now crippled from our pain. We are an easy target….a population that you won’t see parading with signs yelling for our rights. We can’t leave our beds etc so how can we organize, strategize or anything? We NEED YOIR HELP AND EVERYONE THAT WILL GET BEHIND ALL OF YOU PLEASE. I BEG OF YOU PLEASE. WE ARE DYING INSIDE AND EVERYDAY THETE ARE MOTE SUICIDES BECAUSE OF OUR PAIN. That never makes the news. The difference between addicts and pain patients are exactly this….addicts want to be as high as they can using all their scripts/street drugs within a couple days…as pain patients, we are more than aware that we need to take the prescribed amount religiously. Why? Because we know our script has to last an entire month. In order to consistantly have a decent quality of life the next day, day after that etc etc we take them as prescribed. I worked in a Behavioral Health Hospital in the Dual Diagnosis Detoxification Unit for many years. I know so much about addiction and there is a clear distinction between us. PLEASE HELP!!

Dana

This report is for people who are not familiar with treating pain or conditions that cause pain. It continually promotes the use Buprenorphine and Tramadol which are not for pain patients but great for abusers since it will get them high. It doesn’t address the intractable pain patients unless maybe the small mention of high impact pain or stigma was it. It’s really about treating the abuser but at least mentions the pain patients and suggesting ways to not confuse them. Before this insanity, it was documentation of the patient’s condition which gave doctors the means to decide if and how much opioid medication to give him. The medication shortages are not random nor a mystery. Sixteen senators ordered the DEA to stop the manufacture of injectable drugs as well as to make reductions in the supply of opioid medications as part of the drug bill. The AG approved and the president signed. It’s searchable on the internet and this website has a report on it. What they didn’t mention in the article here back in 11/17 is after some number of months the drug companies could get a higher price for their drugs, and it was the hospitals that got most of the drugs when they resumed limited manufacture. So now, less to no medicine available for the ill but plenty of illegal drugs that somehow keep coming in freely by the tons over the border are on the streets to purchase at black market price.

Holly

OMG!

“Meanwhile, Dr. Andrew Kolodny, the executive director of Physicians for Responsible Opioid Prescribing (PROP) charged in a tweet that “opioid makers didn’t like the CDC Guideline recommendation so they got a law to create a new HHS Task Force stacked with their friends that proposed alternative recommendations.”

What the hell did he do ? The same exact thing! The only difference is Kolondy has made so many sick and chronic pain patients suffer or commit suicide. What a hypocrite!

Jorge

It is very sad and disturbing that it took a couple of years to make a reasonable approach. Was it not obvious that a great number of us have a legitimate need for meds?
How many people had to pay the ultimate price for this grossly neglect? How many pain patients were sentenced to this cruel and unusual punishment?

Robin

It truly is appalling that the medical community would remotely allow a patient with a truly painful condition remain in pain. If that is the case why bother seeing a physician? For those who have abused the system those in pain are suffering the consequences. None of it makes sense. As someone in pain that never abused anything my quality of life has plummeted. I could possibly have worked longer before retirement but pain has hindered me. My physician seems afraid of even prescribing 50 mg of Tramadol a day which would help me tremendously. Answer to everything is OTC nsaids which I have to over use. Now, I have stomach issues. So disappointing our doctors and government officials cannot help us who need help. Stop thinking everyone is a drug addict or going to get addicted. Help us who need help. Isn’t that why all this drugs were developed for? Seems you need to get back to basics and let the abusers pay the consequences and not me.

Hope for us

Don’t Punish Pain Rally on May 22 2019 happening in cities across the country. Encourage everyone you know to attend a rally near them. We need to keep speaking out! Go to the website for more information and flyers. See videos and DDP talk show on YouTube.

Still in pain

This bureaucratic approach is great if the people suffering can wait a year for someone to decide to make a change in policy and action. There’s no mention of any change from the policies and actions of the DEA which is still continuing and causing doctors to abandon patients. All the while people are dying from pain.

Missy

Tina, all the people taking illegal drugs didn’t do anything to “mess us up!”
Our own government (with crap information given to them by the Obama administration) “messed us up!!” This was a deliberate plan to try to justify denying treatment with opioids for Americans with diseases and serious injuries! At the time when the Dems didn’t think they could possibly lose an election, their intention was to move all Americans into a “Medicare for All” national healthcare system. Millions of Americans have incurable diseases or injuries and the government wanted to find a way out of paying billions for sick and injured people! They knew back when people were dying of illicit drugs that it was illicit fentanyl killing people but instead of alerting anyone, they started the “overprescribing of opioids fairy tale,” skewed the CDC GUIDELINES and accompanying documents to convince this country (even our current president) that doctors were killing patients and patients were nothing but drug addicts who needed treatment for addiction instead of the disease they had or injuries!! Hopefully the violation of this nation
will continue being exposed and those responsible put in prison!

Brian Young

Yea well somebody pass the message on to the VA.

Renee Ryan

After my pain Managment Drs office git the approval to write prescriptions for marijuana they immediately started cutting back all the patients that have been receiving pain Medication for chronic pain. Myself included. I spent the hottest summer to date detoxing down to half the amount of Medication that I have been in since I was injured in a work related accident. I have had 7 failed surgeries that made my original pain ten times worse. Now instead of being on long acting and breakthrough pain Medication which never left me pain free but I was able to live a quality of life. Now I have been cut back to only the short acting low dose that leaves me in pain all the time. I have been on it for years so my tolerance has built up. Do they are supposed to increase the dose it try another drug. None of this is being done. But their marijuana business has quadrupled and they are making more money then the can handle. It’s a disgrace! I can’t even get the marijuana because I am taking an opiod. These money hungry Drs only care about the money and not drawing attention to themselves by writing to many prescriptions for the people that really need it. The only Dr I Know that will give me the Medication I was on before is only taking cash. I am disabled because of my accident. It’s a disgrace. I suffer everyday I’m not an addict and won’t go on the streets to buy the medication I need or worse get herion like a lot if people I know that have died from an overdose. Can anyone help me? Please! Renee Ryan yorenee1@gmail.com

Lauren Gilbert

Yes it is a start. It gives me hope, which is something I have been without for the last couple of years I think. I just want to be able to get my pain level to a steady six and a half or 7 so that I can do a job and feel better about myself. I’m so depressed about this whole thing, although I will say the last couple of reports have left me with a ray of Hope. If anyone out there knows how we can do what the report says which is get people talking I guess to their doctors Etc, other than on a one-on-one basis I’d love to hear from you or see a response to this post. I am definitely going to be talking to my doctor on my next visit. I just pray this nightmare will be ended in a very short period of time. Like tomorrow would be too soon for me but that would be seeing the world through rose-colored glasses and I lost mine a few decades ago LOL.

Ali

This is a sad time in our history when our government used an Opoids epidemic that is truly a street drug epidemic to flex it’s guidelines and rules on innocent intracable chronic pain patients and then it took since 2016 for them to listen to us. Our government has ravaged our compliant intracable chronic pain patients and left them hopeless, no insurance, no physician, no medical care, and suicides as the last result. This is not the first Travisty of injustice.
Syphylis study deaths.
Newborn thyroids radiation cancer.
Formula newborn deaths third world countries.
Agent Orange lukemina in veterans babies deaths.
AIDS 1980’s nurses not allowed to know if accident needle stick not tested I was one of those nurses.
Now intracable chronic pain patients targeted in with addicts studies and ripped off medical care.
Our government wheels run slow is a travisty of injustice. How many suicides must happen for our government agencies to even understand the travisty that has happened and these patients are collateral damage from this no duediligence negligence.
I am so sorry tired of the same rhetoric decade after decade from our government agencies as to why their citizens must suffer thru their negligence of duediligence.

Jane patients

This will be a nightmare for chronic pain patients, it’s an anti opioid guideline that takes the cdc guidelines to new highs. This will cause suffering for all Americans not just chronic pain patients, God help us if this passes congress. This will take this genocide to new heights!

Mary

REECE, Check our the malpractice lawyers in Chicago. God Bless

My Pain Management Dr – after I told her the CDC is pushing back on Forced Tapering “ It is what it is, your medication will be reduced again next month “ and then she said “ Have a nice day. “

Gail Honadle

I have 3 causes of Intractable pain, 1 is in the Neurological field because of the totally Destroyed Degenerative Spine, 2 Gastro field and now 3 Kidney. I need my doctors in those fields to be able to treat those issues, not some person who is not qualified in them, or is just handing out a script for inadequate mg of pills. Or tell me this or that alternative is the best option. GET IT THROUGH YOUR HEADS, I CAN’T DO PHYSIO, YOGA, Cortisone injections, had a whole year of that, only the Side Effects worked. I don’t need another Steroid injection in a injured joint, all that works is the Side Effects. Meditation, music, doesn’t work tried it long before it became a new fad. All Physio does is Collapse MORE disc with annular tears and leaves me in more PAIN. I exhausted ALL THE ALTERNATIVES before I took that first Pain Pill that at least lets me have a semi semblance of old age to enjoy my grand children. Not this old sick person who can barely walk now. My last Primary ignored my lab work as the Kidney deterioration grew to the point I now have Stage 3 Kidney Disease that is very painful 24/7 to add to the other. Robert Redfield and Andrew Kolodny a Shrink need to PAY for their crimes of FALSIFYING the first report to the President and conning $8.5 Billion out of the government for treating Street Junkies, but not one Dime for Pain Patients they knew what Forced Tapers would do to us it is well documented in Illicit drug Rehab programs which Kolodny ran…Redfield’s 37 yr old is a Heroin one. Kolodny owns Suboxone clinics. Motives of Greed and Revenge has cost thousands of lives due to Heart Attacks and Suicides.

Badly trained or I don’t care doctors are just as much to blame as the Illicit drug runners. I have friends in Canada who are complicating suicide as the situation there is MUCH worse than it is here in the US. Then I see this this morning warning not to import drugs for a lower price as most are FAKE from China. https://thehill.com/opinion/healthcare

Tina I Minger

People that really need pain meds can’t get them because of all the people on drugs messed it up for us that really need them. I dont ever take pain meds unless I really need them. I am on Gabepenten for my pain and it doesn’t work at all. Im on 3 aday. I need something a little stronger than that to even ease my pain. I have back and neck problems. Later on I will need surgery. So please help us that really need it. I am 47 yrs old. My name is Tina Minger. I live in Galax Va. I go to Northern Pain clinic in Mt. Airy Nc.

Reece

I agree with those who say, now, “ Get this to the news media ASAP”. PLEASE. We need help . Desperately. Also, we have to join forces, How do we file a Class Action suit? I have never sued anyone in my life. I don’t even know where to start. Where are the lawyers that will help us?

I agree with Danny. What else are we supposed to do now? It’s not in our hands anymore, come to think; it never was. We did everything we knew possible. All of those letters I wrote the president telling him of the millions of chronic pain patients and veterans, the shape that we were left in; was nothing but a joke as well as the letters that I wrote to other government officials. The presidents staff finally sent a letter back telling me I would need to take this to a federal agency. I responded in telling them in case they hadn’t noticed our federal agencies had taken a walk on the wild side. That somehow I knew I was wasting my time in writing our dear president although come the next election I wouldn’t be wasting my time then! Someone has to help us that is in a higher position, if not we’re going to be in the same boat we’ve been in the past three years. The amount of Tylenol and aspirin I’m taking is a deadly combination in itself. On the other hand “if this is progress”, I am very impressed, although no matter what happens I will always be most thankful to all that just refused to give up!

Butterfly Angel

Pain management….. what a joke… I was on the roller the pain mgmt coaster after one back surgery I was hooked buy the 2 second back surgery I thought for sure this was my life I was done….80 mg opiates
Today I am on 0 mg of opiates and had another surgery recovered zero opiates. XXX
I just used tinture with tsh and cbd……..
My doctor was proud…. I am proud
please listen if your in pain just smoke a bowl…. your pain subsides after a few hits.

Thomas

Laying awake for about the 100th or so nights since being force tapered down to negligible amount of medication. I was doing good but agreed to be lowered for reasons of the over hyped nonsense of our government that I had servved honorably for. Thoughts of moving to Europe, South America or just leaving the world do cross my mind frequently.life has lost any purpose or my ability to cope is gone.Was this the goal of our Government overlords and draconian health care methodical cure for pain., So disappointed

Jim

How does one now find a doctor willing to follow these updated guidelines?

Michele

I fully believe every one taking this survey are true pain patients. Not ones who the government is accuseing of abusing there meds. And i for one will fight and take every survey if that will help make the decision. My hands and feet are crippled due to RA. I was taken off ER morphine put on IR morphine and cut down. Not only did I go threw horrible withdrawl. But what it does to the body already in chronic pain is 100x worse. If only you all walked a mile in our shoes. You would not survive. My daughter is now my care giver. How humiliating to have my child help me shower an do other unimaginable things. My meds kept me functional. I was on the same dose for four yrs. Knowing it was my life line. I could not [edit] with my meds at all. It was not me/us who is killing all these poor ppl in pain it is you the government. Even im smart enough to walk into Dr office and see the real pain patients and the ones sitting there for free drugs. The Drs should be cracking down.

Gary Hancock

The “Opioid Epidemic” is a Trojan Horse vehicle for the Rule Makers to hide the real enablers of addiction: the corrupt, commission-based salary Big Pharma Sales Reps and the doctors who jumped at the personal perks offered to them to move the products. But it’s a documented fact that the death rate spike is a RESULT of the draconian limits that were implemented, leaving thousands of responsible, dependent long-term users of the only respite from otherwise constant pain lost, in withdrawal with no management plan in place, and in agony. In NYC, the strict guidelines, illicit drug testing weeded out a lot of junkies, and once a month appointments with the Pain Management doctor keep you both honest and we’ll informed. And being individually cared for by someone who listens to your history and current struggles assures you a custom-tailored management plan that leaves YOU in control of your treatment. It teaches restraint without punishment for suffering.

Linda Kay Thomas

It’s past My bedtime…However; this Update of The National Pain Report has made ME SO HAPPY….I Know We ALL HAVE A LOT OF WORK TO DO ! DR Bill Bennett (former Drug Zsar.. spell….under President George H.W.BUSH Is very much on Our Side, I e,. He was very honest and prepared for this Fox Interview.. He discussed the evidence regarding OPIOD DEATHS being totally inaccurate. Regarding the SMUGGLED FETNAYL that is. made to look real, but 100 Times more Powerful !? He had been reading evidence reports on REAL CHRONIC PAIN SUFFERERS. Who NEEDED THEIR MEDICINE AND WERE FOUND TO NOT SELL OR .MISUSE THEIR MEDICATIONS. Dr BILL BENNETT’S INTERVIEW Was So AWESOME !!! OKAY,. WE ARE READY TO GET STARTED ON GETTING READY TO START LIVING AGAIN……We Are Ready to Start Caring and Loving ALL OF OUR FAMILY AND FRIENDS WHO HAVE HELPED US LIVE AND NOT GIVE-UP FOR THE LAST SEVERAL YEARS !! THANKS FOR LISTENING……GOD BLESS US ALL………

Tony

Since this government crackdown on opiods I have had over half my medication taken away and forced to have expensive injections that give me relief for a month or two.
I can barely make it through my day at work and spend nights and weekends in bed.
Something needs to Change. Whats next for me? Lose my job, my house, be homeless???
I have two big middle fingers in the air for this phony war on drugs

Michael R George

As a person with arthritis and myalgia combined with crohn’s disease my options are extremely Limited as to pain relief I can take I take oxycodone tens as prescribed I do not abuse them I wouldn’t take them at all if the ibuprofen didn’t eat a hole through my intestines but I am where I am and I don’t want to be punished for something that’s beyond my control

Thank God. Now does this mean I don’t have to sit around and cry all day like a kid in pain. And can stop wishing I’ d die in my sleep?

Judy

I would like to see my pain treatment back in the hands of my primary physican who has treated me for about 10 years. I now have to go to a pain managenent office to be treated by a nurse practioner who doesnt know a thing about my physical history like your primary care does. Nothing personal about it at all and this month it will be lets try this, next month it will be, lets try this. Im tired of taking pills just to satisfy her. The program i had with my primary physican was great. Like they say….. if it aint broke… dont fix it. My life and my pain level has been worse since i have had to deal with going to pain management. Please reverse the way the people who in pain are being dealt with. I dont abuse my pills. And many other long term users dont either. You are targeting the wrong people.

Ali

Reading the Pain Management updates I find the 2016 guidelines have been evaluated for gaps in the care of intracable chronic pain patients. This is a beginning of hope for those of us who lost so much in the last two years that we can never regain. But after reading the recommendations for changes the states that have put in place mandatory tappering of Opoids need to quickly stop there guidelines and give back compliant intracable chronic pain patients there medication’s before any more lives are lost to suicides.
Opoids are a multifacted drug with multidisciplinary needs to prevent abuse. Opoids are a medication that can be used effectively by compliant intracable chronic pain patients to benefit lives with quality and quantity. Suicides have paid a great price for these agencies to listen to there cries for help from intracable chronic pain by stopping a heart beat.
Veterans are being profiled, bullied, restricted, demeaned, refused medical help, and so much life has been lost for these warriors of our country.
Opoids is a pain medication that can be appropriate for it’s use in the intracable chronic pain patients. As with any medicine in this category there is abuse but before stripping a compliant patient of this medicine evaluate is this illegal street use and what drug has been used illegally.
As a retired RN,CNN with intracable chronic pain my withdrawal is not about the next fix but about my pain returning with a vengance.
Thank you for listening and allowing these reports to reflect the disparity in the results of misinterpretation, language misleading, and gaps that left compliant patients with no medical care for there intracable chronic pain.
Moving forward with the knowledge, information, multiple agencies, and using a multidisciplinary multifaceted approach you can apply duediligence to develope guidelines that will change the course of Opoids and patient care for the betterment of all who are in need of this.

Max Beichert

The AMA, and those who follow (including this Blog), may praise the Task Force review of draft recommendations for “reversing harmful policies, such as arbitrary limits on prescribed pain medications,” but even if the entire 100 MME (morphine milligram equivalent) daily dosage limit was stripped entirely (which is not likely) from a “new” CDC Guideline, there still remains the “real” issue that at least twenty-eight states have already adopted the former as settled law. Nothing the CDC changes, after-the fact, can now by and in itself change any of that. And the likelihood that some dosage recommendation will still remain as part of the Guideline is high, as the CDC has maintained that its edict from the beginning was intended only as general guidance for prescribing physicians, etc. and not for rote adoption by legislatures as state law. However, the true value to a revisit and, hopefully, a rewrite of the Guideline, is that it will justify opening a “door” for those of us who continue to beat the drum that legislators have no reason (and are vulnerable to political and possible civil penalties) for coming between the doctor and the patient. If the gap is wide enough, it may be possible for these laws to be surgically-amended (removing the “cancer,” while leaving the showpiece prescription drug monitoring program or PDMP intact), but only if constituencies (including patients, patient advocates, physicians and sympathetic politicians) in each state are active enough, and the underlying platform of any new CDC “recommendations” is strong enough to supply sufficient support. And, no, it won’t be enough for any of us to merely point to a new edition of the Guideline, with the expectation that any change in law will surely follow. The investment in the adoption of its predecessor was huge for states, in terms of time, dollars and political capital spent, but as a result many could (and did) pride themselves as having the “toughest drug laws in the nation.”

Paula Frazier

So when are the DEA & DOJ scare tactics of legitimate pain management doctors going to be addressed? There was no mention of that anywhere. I have adhesive arachnoiditis and live in West Virginia where not 1 doctor will treat my pain because they are terrified of the DEA. Unless this is addressed, all of the changes by the HHS are utterly worthless. Suicide should not be my only option for pain relief.

Stacie Wagner

I’m glad something came out of our imput. I hope it helps someone not go through this hell.

Reece

Does anyone have the name of an attorney to speak with regarding termination of treatment with no notice and no medication. ( Not even a day’s worth). This is cruel and inhuman treatment. I would greatly appreciate the name of an attorney to contact. Thank you.

Susan

I think this committee has left a lot unsaid, and understated. It leaves a wider gap between patient and the Pain Management specialist.

Thomas Wayne Kidd

Now if pain doctors will in fact use this as it should be used. Over the past several years I have been amazed just how uneducated some doctors really are. They are supposed to be smarter than how they reacted to what has been going on. I will just wait and see. I have been so mistreated over past years that I have little to no confidence in the medical field. So tired of being treated as a criminal. Praying for something better than what we have experienced in the past 3 years. M new pain doctor actually did increase my daily dose the last appointment, so I am encouraged a little bit. Dear friends hang on. You’re all in my prayers.